From its historically lax attitude toward gays in the military to its celebration of transgender and openly gay pop culture figures like Ataru Nakamura and Akihiro Miwa, Japan’s general attitude toward the LGBTQ community has been relatively accepting compared to some of its more puritanical and authoritarian friends. Still, while reports of outright discrimination are somewhat rare, Japan still has no national law protecting LGBTQ people from discrimination, and same-sex couples are still ineligible for the many of the legal protections available to opposite-sex couples in Japan. Not to mention, the Human Rights Watch organization recently reported an alarming ‘epidemic’ of LGBTQ bullying in Japanese schools. However, given the fact that the majority of Japanese citizens are supportive of LGBTQ rights, and the fact that many municipalities, including Tokyo, have begun putting legal protections in place, and have begun to implement training programs geared toward spreading awareness and tolerance, we can only hope that they continue heading in the right direction. Here are our top stories on Japan:
Get Your Boys Love Manga Fix With These Top Titles and Swoon-Worthy Stories

Japanese Boys Love manga (BL) has been steadily gaining popularity over the past decade. For the non-indoctrinated, this type of manga depicts exactly what one would assume: the romance and sexual tension between two men. The genre was developed by a group of women in the 1970s — often called[…]

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Kabuki Theater’s Queer Legacy Runs Contrary to Japan’s Lack of LGBTQ Acceptance

Kabuki theater, known for its elaborate costumes and heavily stylized performances, is an interesting and noteworthy performance of gender. While Japan’s anti-discrimination laws for LGBTQ+ people are non-existent, the country “has a long, well-established tradition of genderbending for entertainment” and depicting somewhat ambiguous same-sex attraction in films and comics. In[…]

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Fandom and the Internet Are Responsible for the Existence of Queer Anime and Manga

While there are a number of outstanding queer anime and manga now, it wasn’t always so — and we have internet anime fans to thank for that

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From Buff Swimmers to Queer Rock Icons, These Are 5 of the Best Gay Anime of All Time

While there are a number of queer characters in anime, they’re not always treated well — but these 5 gay anime series show the world how it’s done

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